Witness testimony began Wednesday in the trial of an ex-con from Desert Hot Springs who allegedly burned his girlfriend with a meth pipe while beating her severely enough to cause her to lose consciousness twice.
Jorge Dagoberto Gilbert, 35, is charged with four felony counts, including attempted murder and torture. He could face a possible life sentence if convicted of all charges, according to Riverside County District Attorney’s Office spokesman John Hall.
A felony sexual assault count was previously dismissed by a judge, who determined the prosecution did not present sufficient evidence at the defendant’s preliminary hearing to proceed to trial on that charge.
The trial is expected to last 10 days, court records show.
Gilbert was initially arrested on March 29, 2018, for allegedly leading police on a pursuit and being in possession of a gun and illegal fireworks.
After being released around 8 a.m. the following morning on $10,000 bail, he tracked down his girlfriend and accused her of cheating on him while he was in custody, according to an arrest warrant declaration.
He then allegedly tied her up with a phone cord, punched, choked and burned her with a heated meth pipe, prior to stabbing her in the leg and hand, according to the declaration, which alleges that he told her he was going to “bury her.”
The woman fled naked with only a blanket wrapped around her body and asked a neighbor to call police.
Gilbert is being without bail at the Smith Correctional Facility in Banning.
>> Want to read more stories like this? Get our Free Daily Newsletters Here!Follow us: